Penne Carbonara

Penne Carbonara
Recipe type: Entree
  • 3 cups mushrooms with stems, sliced ¼-inch thick
  • 1 red pepper
  • 16 slices bacon, precooked, crumbled
  • ¼ cup rendered bacon drippings
  • 2 pounds cooked penne (1 pound dry weight), precooked
  • 4 tablespoons pure olive oil
  • 3 cups béchamel sauce (recipe follows)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons parsley, finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • Salt, to taste
  1. Clean the mushrooms and red pepper and slice vertically into ¼-inch slices.
  2. Set these items aside.
  3. Precook the bacon, until fully cooked, but not crisp.
  4. Save the rendered bacon drippings for sautéing the mushrooms and peppers.
  5. Drain the bacon on paper towels, crumble and set aside.
  6. Cook the spaghetti according to package directions and blend with a little olive oil after draining to prevent sticking together.
  7. Add the reserved bacon drippings to a large, heavy skillet over medium heat and add the mushrooms and peppers and sauté until the mushrooms are golden, but not brown.
  8. Add the bacon strips, stir well and turn off the heat.
  9. Add the warm, precooked spaghetti and blend all ingredients together thoroughly.
  10. Add the warm béchamel sauce, black pepper, chopped parsley and salt, and blend thoroughly.
  11. Remove to a heated serving dish, or portion onto heated dinner plates, and sprinkle generously with the freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
  12. Serve immediately.


Béchamel Sauce

Béchamel Sauce
Recipe type: sauce
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  1. In a heavy saucepan set over medium-high heat, cook the onion with the butter just until the onions are softened.
  2. Stir in the flour.
  3. Cook and stir the roux for about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the milk in a steady stream, whisking steadily until the sauce smoothes out.
  5. Add the salt. Simmer the sauce for about 10 minutes, or until it is thickened to the consistency you desire.
  6. Sauce can be kept for several days, refrigerated.
  7. Cover the surface with a buttered round of parchment paper to prevent a skim from forming.